baked french toast

baked french toastbaked french toast

Mr H. has officially started baby led weaning and he couldn’t be happier.

For the past couple of weeks he’s been so interested in watching his big sister, mummy and daddy eat and when he started to display the skills needed to self feed we couldn’t wait to get started.

So far our little guy is a huge fan of sweet potato wedges, banana, strawberries, rockmelon, wholemeal toast and zucchini fritters.

And to officially welcome Mr H. into the wonderful world of food we celebrated over Sunday brunch with this lovely batch of gorgeously golden baked french toast.

This french toast is perfect for baby led weaning beginners for so many reasons.  Firstly the recipe has no added sugar, the eggy mixture is simply sweetened with a dash of maple syrup and a good squeeze of orange juice and zest.  And because this version of french toast is baked rather than fried there is no need for any butter or cooking oil.  This method of cooking also creates perfectly textured bread that can withstand the iron grip of a baby led weaning beginner yet is soft enough to nibble on with ease.  Mr H. had no problem whatsoever gobbling up his Sunday morning breakfast along with some fresh berries.

To create your own batch of gorgeously golden baked french toast simply…

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orange cranberry soda bread

cranberry orange soda breadcranberry orange soda bread

Sunday mornings usually mean some type of pancakes at our place.  This weekend however, we decided to try something a little different and bake a gorgeously golden loaf of orange cranberry soda bread and I am so glad we did.

This bread is not only a breeze to bake, we had our fruit spiked loaf nestled in the oven in less than 10 minutes but is a delicious alternative to our usual pancakes.

Preparing this loaf is much like baking a batch of scones, you rub a little butter into flour, add milk to create a dough, shape and bake until golden and cooked.  Its very simple and just like scones, this loaf also freezes beautifully.  Our surplus loaf was cut into thick slices, wrap individually and popped into the deep freeze ready to be enjoyed later in the week.

Grace had the best fun making this loaf, not only because she was in charge of measuring the ingredients which resulted in flour absolutely everywhere but playing and kneading the dough has to be the best fun a 2 year old can have in the kitchen.

The flavour of this bread is just lovely.  The cranberry and orange work together beautifully to create the most amazingly flavoured loaf and I just love that the cranberries caramelise throughout the orange scented dough.  We served our loaf, still warm, alongside a little fresh fruit and fresh orange juice.

To create your own gorgeously golden loaf of cranberry orange soda bread simply…

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apricot coconut breakfast cookies

apricot coconut breakfast cookiesapricot coconut breakfast cookies

Miss G. and I did a little baking yesterday and came up with these gorgeously golden darlings and I am so excited to share the recipe.

Not only are these babies chock full of apricot, coconut and oats but are sugar free and can be whipped up and nestled in the oven baking to golden perfection in less than 10 minutes.  And the flavour of these cookies is amazing, the vanilla bean paste and maple syrup work so beautifully with the oats to create the most incredible baby led weaning breakfast.

We ate these for breakfast this morning, along with a little fresh fig but these breakfast cookies would make the perfect addition to any lunch box and make the perfect on-the-go snack.  There not too messy either which is great for when you’re out and about.

Although I haven’t tried to freeze these cookies (they disappear way too quickly) I do think they would freeze beautifully.  Simply wrap individual portions, pop into a freezer container and stash in the deep freeze for up to 3 months.

If your little one is just beginning their baby led weaning adventure these cookies may be a little ambitious and the slightly crumbly texture may be a little too challenging.  However from approximately 8 months onwards your little one should be fine with these cookies.

To create these easy peasy apricot coconut breakfast cookies simply…

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baby led weaning breakfast ideas

baby led weaning breakfastwholesome apple & cinnamon breakfast cookies

When it comes to baby led weaning, serving breakfast is often the easiest and most simple meal to get started with.  A piece of lightly toasted bread topped with avocado or a little fresh fruit make a wonderful breakfast.  However it doesn’t take long before you’re little one is eating the same thing day after day and soon becomes bored.   But coming up with new and exciting breakky ideas each and every single day isn’t easy (especially when you’re busy) so I thought I’d share a few of our winning breakfast ideas to inspire you…

baby led weaning breakfast

With the weather heating up Miss G.’s favourite of late is fresh fruit (usually mango, strawberries or blueberries), a little yoghurt and a sprinkle of muesli.  Its super simple for me to prepare and she absolutely loves it.  If your just starting baby led weaning make sure to chop your fruit into large chip shaped pieces (pieces of banana, apple and mango are wonderful), so to ensure your little one can easily grab and nibble away on them.  Also the muesli may be a little bit of a challenge for the beginners so please feel free to add this down the track when they’re eating style develops a little more.

baby led weaning breakfast

A much loved favourite and wonderful for baby led weaning beginners is this lightly toasted bread topped with creamy ricotta, sliced fruit and a sprinkle of cinnamon.  At the moment I make this toast with strawberries but Grace also adores slices of apple or raspberries.  This breakfast really is wonderful for beginners because the toast is super easy for the little ones to pick up and nibble on.

ricotta & cinnamon fruit toastricotta & cinnamon fruit toast

Another ‘must try’ breakfast for baby led weaning beginners are pancakes.  These little babies are so simple for little ones to eat, are jam packed with fruit, are a less messy breakfast option and are also so easy to make.  During our blw journey I have conjured up pumpkin choc pancakes, caramelised banana dutch pancake, coconut peach pancakes,  carrot apple & sultana pancakes, wholesome ricotta hotcakes, strawberry and orange buttermilk pikelets,  pear & cinnamon pikelets and raspberry pikelets.

Pancakes and pikelets also freeze wonderfully.  On weekends I’ll often cook up a big batch of the fluffy darlings, allow to cool, wrap individually and stash in the deep freeze for up to three months.  They defrost very quickly (especially during summer) and if they need a help along I either pop them in the microwave or toaster.

caramelised banana dutch pancake with fresh strawberriescaramelised banana dutch pancake with fresh strawberriescoconut peach pancakeswholesome ricotta hotcakes w' summer berry sauce

When time is on my side I love to get into the kitchen and do a little breakfast baking.  I usually either whip up a wholesome fruit laced loaf or a batch of oat loaded breakfast cookies.  For me, this option is wonderful, it means breakfast is pretty much done for the week, I need only add a little sliced fruit to serve alongside the breakfast loaf and cookies and Miss G. is always satisfied.

My favourite breakfast loaf has to be this wholesome apple & cinnamon breakfast bread.  Its so simple to prepare, chock full of nutritious apple and fills the house with most gorgeous aromas of apple and cinnamon as it bakes.

wholesome apple & cinnamon breakfast bread

And these wholesome apple & cinnamon breakfast cookies take no time to prepare and cook and are chock full of banana, sultanas and oats.  Grace loves to help in the kitchen when we bake these and they make a wonderful addition to her lunch box too!

wholesome apple & cinnamon breakfast cookies

Another baking breakfast option I have to mention are scones.  Not only are they easy for your little one to eat but they’re a less messy breakfast option which is great for when you are out and about.

My favourite scone recipes are mango coconut scones, raspberry almond scones,  carrot cake scones, pumpkin scones and blueberry scones.

mango coconut sconesraspberry & almond sconescarrot cake sconespumpkin scones

Once your little one is able to drink through a straw a breakfast smoothie is a great way to break up the monotony of breakfast.  Into a blender I tumble in a handful of strawberries, a dollop of yoghurt, a sprinkle of cinnamon and of course milk and blitz until smooth.  The trick with smoothies is to ensure they’re not too thick, that way they can be easily slurped up.  And to ensure Miss G. is getting enough I always serve a smoothie alongside either a piece of toast or breakfast cookie.

baby led weaning breakfast

I hope these breakfast ideas have given you a little baby led weaning breakfast inspiration.  And please feel free to share your ideas in the comments section.  X

pumpkin choc pancakes

pumpkin choc pancakespumpkin choc pancakes

With Halloween {& Miss G.’s birthday} just around the corner we decided to get into the spooky spirit this morning and create a gorgeous batch of pancakes spiked with cinnamon roasted pumpkin and deep dark choc chips.

And these orange hued choc studded babies are delicious.

Since our baby led weaning journey began I have created so many incarnations of pancakes/pikelets/hotcakes.  Why?  Because they’re so simple to prepare and the shape and texture of pancakes are perfect for little hands to grip and nibble on with ease, especially for beginners.  A batch of fruit laden pancakes make the ultimate fuss-free blw breakfast, lunch box addition or on-the-go snack and they also keep wonderfully in the deep freeze!

Todays pancakes are really all about the pumpkin.  Rather than boiling or steaming, I decided to smother the pumpkin in cinnamon and roast until gorgeously golden and amazingly sweet.  And once pureed the intensely sweet pumpkin added so much natural sweetness to the batter there was very little need for sugar other than a little drizzle or two of maple syrup.

But I did decide to add dark chocolate chips to the batter because what would Halloween be without a little naughty treat.   And I’m so glad I did because the warm gooey pockets of melted dark chocolate are divine and were a huge hit with Miss G.  So much so, she was fishing them out of the batter before we’d even had a chance to cook them.

To create your own halloween inspired pumpkin choc pancakes simply…

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caramelised banana dutch pancake with fresh strawberries

caramelised banana dutch pancake with fresh strawberriescaramelised banana dutch pancake with fresh strawberries

I adore everything about winter.

The cosy clothes, endless cups of hot tea and days spent with the slow cooker bubbling away in the kitchen are my idea of heaven.

The late winter sunrise also guarantees a greatly appreciated sleep in most mornings and when Miss G. finally stirs she is more than happy to huddle, snuggle and cuddle under the warm cosy covers until we finally pluck up enough courage to face the frosty morning together.

Most mornings we make our way straight to the kitchen to heat up our beloved oats with a little stewed apple but this morning I decided something a little extra special was required so we put together this super simple caramelised banana dutch pancake with fresh strawberries.

Although I have a very special place in my heart for traditional pancakes, on a frosty winter morning when immediate warming nourishment is required I much prefer the fuss free nature of the Dutch pancake.  There is no standing over a fry pan endlessly flipping pancakes, simply pour the batter over a little caramelised fruit and pop into a piping hot oven.  Fifteen minutes later a perfectly puffed and gorgeously golden fruit studded pancake emerges ready to be devoured.

Todays incarnation of our fuss free pancake included caramelised banana and fresh strawberries and really was baby led weaning winter breakfast perfection.  The texture of the pancake is perfect for little hands to hold and nibble away on with ease and when served alongside fresh strawberries and a little yoghurt, this breakfast will have your little one satisfied all morning long.

To create this winter warming caramelised banana dutch pancake with fresh strawberries simply…

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wholesome apple & cinnamon breakfast bread

wholesome apple & cinnamon breakfast bread

wholesome apple & cinnamon breakfast bread

This wholesome apple & cinnamon breakfast bread saved my sanity this morning.

Thanks to eye teeth charging their way through her swollen, red and very sore gums Miss G. was once again refusing to eat.

She was one very cranky little girl.

And rightfully so.

Teething is just awful.

I keep asking myself why the poor little darlings have to endure all of this pain only to lose these teeth a few years down the track.

I hate seeing her in pain, my heart breaks.  Equally as awful is watching her refuse to eat.

This morning I tried absolutely everything but not a crumb passed her lips.

My last resort was to bake.

There is nothing quite like a loaf of gorgeousness nestled in the oven filling the house with the fragrance of cinnamon and baked apple to wet Miss G’s. appetite and interest.  Mine too.

But with an upset snuggly bubby nestled permanently on my hip my hands and time were very limited so I decided to pile all of the makings of a wholesome, fruit filled and sugar free breakfast bread into my food processor and blitz.

The results were sublime.

This bread is dense, moist, chock full of apple and echoes the wholesome gorgeousness of maple syrup and vanilla.

Along with a few slices of apple and a small handful of raspberries Miss G. devoured a still warm slice of the apple packed breakfast bread.

****insert happy face here****

To create this wonderfully wholesome apple & cinnamon breakfast bread simply…

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